The Virtual Secretary – Should You Get One?

Surely, you’ve heard of the virtual secretary, also known as the virtual assistant. These people can do work for you from anywhere in the world. You don’t need to provide office space, supplies and a computer for them, because they use their personal ones. Neither do you have to consider them as official employees, exempting you from most tax and labor laws normally related to hiring people locally. These benefits of hiring one are definitely attractive, but the question is do you actually need one?

Virtual Secretary ImageFirst, take a look at your business. Whether it’s an online business or a brick-and-mortar offline business, are there certain processes or tasks which you think can be done by someone from a different continent, for example? If you had a cafe or a restaurant, does it actually make sense to have some tasks, like accounting or other things done offshore? Maybe your restaurant has a website, and potential customers can make reservations and/or send email communications to your company? If you own a small manufacturing business, then maybe people need Pokies to call you for issues or problems?

The point here is, look at certain tasks in your business that can be done over the internet or voice over IP (VOIP) technology. If it’s a significant enough chunk of work, then you may hire a full time or part time virtual secretary to do the work for you. Here is a list of typical tasks or work that a virtual secretary can do for you:

  1. Emails (answering, checking, organizing, etc)
  2. Customer Support (via phone, chat or messaging)
  3. Audio or Video Transcription
  4. Article, content or any other form of writing/re-writing/editing.
  5. Spreadsheet work (e.g. MS Excel tabulation, etc)
  6. Blog posting/updating
  7. Basic website maintenance

It really boils down to your creativity and how you are able to box and ship certain types of work to come up with a seamless business model to get the best costs, quality and speed of work for yourself. If you haven’t done so yet, try assessing which part of your business could be cheaper done by a virtual secretary or two.

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